Entries in "Mac Daddy" (1)


Free Helicopter Rides in British Columbia!

It is not every day that I get to ride in a helicopter, so once a year for the Freeskiing World Tour stop in Revelstoke, British Columbia, I try my damndest to make it into the finals so I can get a lift. This year, my first run on the North Bowl venue went well. I had a smooth line with a decent sized air and a fun little straight line that put me in seventh place at the end of the day, the exact same place I was in after the first run last year. I was elated to be able to get another free ride in the heli.

If you have not had the awesome experience of getting dropped off at the top of a mountain by one of these incredible machines, I highly recommend you do so. Usually they are quite pricey and you would have to sell your car or your first-born child to get into one, but just for reference, Silverton Mountain is doing $159 heli drops. Check it out. Silverton is cool skiing anyway and the locals are a form of entertainment unto themselves.

So there I was at the top of “Mac Daddy” face in Revelstoke with the wind and snow whipping around me from the force of the rotors. On one side of the peak was a multiple thousand foot cliff, and on the other was the freshly avalanche controlled face that I was going to ski for my second run. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous. For faces like “Mac Daddy,” athletes are only allowed to inspect visually which means that you have to find features that will tell you where you are when you are skiing down so that hopefully you don’t get lost. You also have to guess how big any cliffs you will be hitting are. Sometimes you guess right, and sometimes you guess wrong. It all depends on how good your binoculars are.

Standing at the starting flags on the top of a 2500 vertical foot descent would make anyone feel alive.  It can be extremely scary as well, but the sense of accomplishment when I ski through the finish far outweighs the nervous anticipation. The snow on “Mac Daddy” was variable and difficult to ski, and so I made it a point to stay on my feet, ski the line I had planned, and not do anything too crazy. This apparently worked because I finished my run in one piece, got a second heli ride to the spectator ridge, and later found out that I had placed 4th overall. Doing well in a competition is always gratifying, but for this event it was simply the cherry on top of the twice in a lifetime (now) opportunity to heli ski for free (not counting the entry fee for the event and the plane tickets from Vermont). I will definitely be going back next year. Below is a video of a fellow FWT athlete and Moment Skis team member who talks about the trials and tribulations of being on the FWT. There is a short interview and clip of me, but mostly this is cool because he drops what we think was around a 110 ft. cliff. Nasty!